Members of the Mt. Top Senior Citizens Center in Thomas promoted breast cancer awareness on this week with a luncheon that included speakers from the WVU Extension Office and West Virginia Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program.
Center members involved with the Community Educational Outreach Service invited Jennifer Poling of the extension office and Ruthie Watts of the WVBCCSP to talk about cancer detection and services provided by their programs on Tuesday.
"It's very important to check your breast each month," Watts said.
The Inter-Mountain photo by Casey Houser
From left, Mt. Top Senior Citizen Center members Jo Adamy, Adalene Snyder, Thelma Turek, Louise Felpon and Joretts Kuhn hang a wreath at the center on Tuesday morning in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
She said that simple tests can be completed at home. Checking the breast for lumps is a process that takes only a few minutes and can save a person's life.
Watts also discussed the need for more advanced services that can only be done at a doctor's office. These include clinical breast exams and mammograms.
"Don't wait to get a mammogram," she said.
Watts said that certain risk factors can make women and men more susceptible to cancer. Age, personal and family history, the onset of menopause and having children after age 30 can all increase a person's risk.
The WVBCCSP assists people who have low incomes. They offer clinical breast exams, mammograms, pap tests and pelvic exams to those between ages 25 and 64 who meet low-income requirements.
Different income levels are set for different family sizes. The services are targeted toward people who have no insurance or who are underinsured.
Poling spoke about the role of the extension office.
"We oversee all the CEOS clubs in the county," she said.
Officials at the extension office support CEOS members by helping them coordinate programs like the one presented Tuesday.
Similar programs have been presented across the state and each group has their own personalized ceremony.
The Tucker County group hung a wreath for the event. Senior center members Jo Adamy, Adalene Snyder, Thelma Turek, Louise Felpon and Joretts Kuhn were involved in the hanging of the wreath.
In addition to lunch, Meg and Jim Buddingh performed on the acoustic and slide guitar, respectively. As they played, Meg Buddingh sang about life and love. The crowd joined in during her final number, a rendition of "When the Saints Go Marching In."
For more information about the program, Watts can be contacted at 304-257-5419.